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1984 (1984)

Nineteen Eighty-Four (original title)
R | | Drama, Sci-Fi | 22 March 1985 (USA)
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3:00 | Trailer
In a totalitarian future society, a man, whose daily work is re-writing history, tries to rebel by falling in love.

Director:

Michael Radford

Writers:

George Orwell (novel), Michael Radford
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Popularity
2,254 ( 280)
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Hurt ... Winston Smith
Richard Burton ... O'Brien
Suzanna Hamilton ... Julia
Cyril Cusack ... Charrington
Gregor Fisher ... Parsons
James Walker James Walker ... Syme
Andrew Wilde ... Tillotson
David Trevena David Trevena ... Tillotson's Friend
David Cann David Cann ... Martin
Anthony Benson Anthony Benson ... Jones
Peter Frye Peter Frye ... Rutherford
Roger Lloyd Pack ... Waiter
Rupert Baderman Rupert Baderman ... Winston Smith as a Boy
Corinna Seddon Corinna Seddon ... Winston's Mother
Martha Parsey Martha Parsey ... Winston's Sister
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Storyline

Longing for freedom, the lowly bureaucrat of the Ministry of Truth, Winston Smith, summons up the courage to write down his unspoken desires in his little secret diary. Serving silently at the pleasure of the grim, autocratic hyper-state of Oceania, Smith knows that the English Socialist Party's supreme leader, the omnipotent Big Brother, watches his every move, condemning the already terrified people into a life of slavery. Under those dire circumstances--as the totalitarian government's suffocating stranglehold tightens more and more--Julia, another equally seditious party member, crosses paths with Winston, and a dangerous clandestine affair begins. Now, there's no turning back, and, sooner or later, the illicit couple will have to pay for its hideous crimes against the dictatorial state. What makes a good citizen? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The year of the movie. The movie of the year. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 March 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

1984 See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$29,897, 16 December 1984

Gross USA:

$8,430,492

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,430,492
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie was released thirty-six years after the novel was published. See more »

Goofs

At the end of the movie, Winston is sitting in the Chestnut Tree Café (acute accent over the e). In the book (before there were accent marks), it was Cafe. Also, given what society was like in movie, Café feels wrong. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Big Brother: [voice-over] This is our land. A land of peace and of plenty. A land of harmony and hope. This is our land. Oceania. These are our people. The workers, the strivers, the builders. These are our people. The builders of our world, struggling, fighting, bleeding, dying. On the streets of our cities and on the far-flung battlefields. Fighting against the mutilation of our hopes and dreams. Who are they?
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the end credits finish and the screen goes black, the monotonous end-title music keeps droning on for nine more minutes. See more »

Alternate Versions

The original theatrical release was shown in desaturated color, enhancing the dystopian tone of the film. Later video and TV versions have been shown in truer, "natural" color. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cube (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Sex Crime
Written & Performed by The Eurythmics
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Faithful adaptation - maybe too much?
22 June 2005 | by mr composerSee all my reviews

George Orwell's literary masterpiece "1984" is presented with amazing accuracy and detail in this version filmed during the very months of the author's vision. The casting, set design, and atmosphere are all right on the mark for how I envisioned them during reading the book. This film is dark and uncompromising, and follows many of the dialogs verbatim from the book.

The flaw in the film, for me, is that I felt like I only enjoyed and understood this movie BECAUSE I had read the book already. There is a theory I once heard and agree with: the closer an adaptation is to the source, the more necessary it is to read the source. A good adaptation is faithful to the essentials of a story but makes necessary changes so that it not only becomes cinematic, yet also becomes something that a viewer unfamiliar with the source material can understand. I think if I were ignorant of the story, there are too many things that would confuse me in this film which the book seems to go out of its way to explain.

For example: Who/Where exactly is Oceania? How did the countries go from their current political state to the envisioned one? Why do the people gather in mass and scream passionate hateful exclamations at the screen? What exactly does Winston actually do? Who are the proles? I praise movies that can effectively tell a story without means of voice-over, a much overused device in films. In this case though, I think a little may have helped, not necessarily wall-to-wall, but sparingly used. The movie is effective by being more ambiguous than the book, but I tend to think maybe it is too ambiguous.

In summary, read the book if you haven't (either before or after seeing the film) to get a complete overview of the author's vision. With that as a foundation, this really is a good cinematic portrayal, and of a story that is still relevant and not impossible to come to pass. Obviously 1984 is long since gone bye-bye, but 2084 or 2054? Oppression can always come as long as people desire self-centered power and the masses don't pay close attention.


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